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OBITUARY

Danny "The Legend" Ray Greenfield

June 16, 1940November 11, 2020
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Danny "The Legend" Ray Greenfield passed away in Ft. Smith, AR on Wednesday, November 11, 2020. He was born in Fort Smith on June 16, 1940 and spent his early years in Mountainburg, AR. His senior year they moved to Van Buren where he played football, basketball, baseball and ran track for Coach Clair Bates and graduated from Van Buren High School in 1959. This is where he met and then married his high school sweetheart, Carolyn Gilstrap. He was a devoted husband to Carolyn for 50 year before her passing Jan 28, 2010.

Danny attended Southern State College in Magnolia, AR, where he competed as a multi-sport athlete for the Muleriders, showcasing his athleticism on the gridiron, the hardwood and the diamond; earning All-Arkansas Intercollegiate Conference (AIC) First-Team honors in multiple sports. Greenfield, most known for his quickness and versatility, merited six varsity letters during his collegiate career, which included four as a halfback for the Mulerider Football team and two as a shortstop with the Mulerider Baseball team. On the diamond in 1961 Greenfield notched all-conference accolades as he was named an All-AIC First-Team shortstop. In his All-AIC senior football season of 1962, Greenfield, a two-way player, led the Muleriders in rushing, receiving and special team return yards, while also adding three interceptions. His baseball career continued professionally as he played six seasons of Minor League Baseball advancing as high as Double-A ball with three different teams: Birmingham Barons (1964), Ashville Tourists (1966) and Birmingham A’s (1968). In 1966, Greenfield was one of the top hitters, swinging .339 (126-for-372) for the Single-A Advanced Modesto Reds (Athletics organization) and helped lead the team to an 88-53 record overall and the California League Championship. That season, Greenfield was teammates with three future Major League Baseball legends; all three of which were inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame: Rollie Fingers, Reggie Jackson, and Tony La Russa. Greenfield finished his professional baseball career as a .291 hitter with 619 hits, which included 75 doubles, 33 triples, and five home runs. He scored 447 runs and was responsible for 209 RBI. His aforementioned quickness paid dividends on the base paths as he swiped 111 bags in his career. Danny served in the Army prior to beginning his business career with Navistar/International Trucks as President of Carco International, where he proudly worked for over 52 years. Danny was also an active member of Community Bible Church.

Danny was an avid (scratch) golfer. He also enjoyed fishing and socializing with family and friends. One of his favorite things to do was attend his grandchildren’s sporting events. He never met a stranger, he was funny in his own "quiet" kind of way, always made people feel comfortable and constantly made us smile when he was around.

He was preceded in death by his parents, John T Greenfield and Imogene Osburn Greenfield of Mountainburg and his wife, Carolyn. He is survived by his son, Ripper Greenfield and Ripper’s wife, Paula Rhodes Greenfield and "Gran-Danny" to their children Hudson, Holton and Haven Greenfield, all of Austin, TX. Additionally, he is survived by sisters, Terrill Gregg (Batesville, AR), Sandy Greenfield (San Diego, CA) and brother, Jerry Greenfield (Alma, AR). Danny was a loving husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend.

A visitation will be held at Community Bible Church (9201 S. Dallas St. Ft. Smith, AR) on Monday, November 16, 2020 at noon, with a Celebration of Life Service at 1pm. Cremation and services are entrusted to Edwards Funeral Home.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you consider a memorial to Fort Smith Boys and Girls Club (4905 N. “O”, Ft. Smith, AR 72904) of which Danny held dear to his heart.

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    Monday, November 16, 2020

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Danny "The Legend" Ray Greenfield

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Steve Waters

November 16, 2020

I first met Danny attending an annual meeting with International trucks in 2003. During that meeting he invited me to work with him on selling a major fleet in his home town. He won that sale and we sold a lot of trucks together in the years to come. Danny was the consummate professional and I learned a lot from him. He was like a big brother to me, I looked up to him and we became friends.

If you happen to be lucky enough to be paired with Danny in a foursome, you were in for a treat. I was in awe of Danny’s skill and despite my lack of skill, I was always comfortable with him and had a great time on the course. It was fun to watch him take Randy’s money from time to time.

My favorite memory of Danny is when he and Carolyn surprised us, while on their way to Rips for Christmas, stopped in Dallas and invited my wife and I and our new born daughter to Christmas brunch. They brought a gift, a collection of Winnie the Poo books. I have them to this day and have read them to each of my children over the years. That’s the kind of couple they were. Thoughtful.

We often spoke of family when we were together. He was so proud of Rip and his family and he would show me the latest pictures of Hudson, Holton and Havey and talk about all of the things they were into. A very proud Grandfather.

Having known him, I can see why he is “The Legend”. I will miss my friend. Rest In Peace Danny.

Jennifer Enslow

November 16, 2020

Greenfield, Danny and Danny Bear were the names used to identify Danny in our family. He was a great mentor and friend to Randy, Emily and I.
Simply put we loved him.
He was gentle, loving and kind hence Danny Bear as Emily would say.
We share so many fun memories.
Randy’s memories work & golf went hand-in-hand... truth be said there is a lot of influence on a golf course... And Danny’s influence was good thing,
But his legacy will live on.
We will deeply miss him.
Our deepest and most sincere condolences to all of Dannys family. Ripper, Paula, Hudson, Holton and Haven we love you.



Kevin Layman

November 15, 2020

Danny was a friend of my father, somewhat younger, and I remember him being around a lot beginning when I was ten or so. He would come over most holidays, we would watch football for hours, he would take us four-wheeling in the Van Buren river bottoms or weather permitting we would play basketball or catch.

Later when I came back from dental school I had the great pleasure of playing in many golf tournaments with Danny as my partner and with no small success, mostly due to him.

He of course was a really great athlete, a really good golfer and an even better person. Danny had an amazingly even temperament. Despite spending many hundreds if not thousands of hours with him on the golf course I can’t recall him ever losing his temper.

Generous to a fault, he gave me my first pair of nice cowboy boots when I was a young teenager and I still have them to this day, even if I can no longer comfortably get them on my fat feet; plus many other things to me and my brothers and I remember Danny and Carolyn even taking in the daughter of a relative who was having problems and helping to raise her.

They did a great job raising Rip and I know how proud they were of him. I know Danny rejoiced in his grandchildren and how happy he was about getting to spend time with them in Austin.

It’s hard to speak of Danny without mentioning Carolyn; they are inseparable in my mind. She was a wonderful friend to my mother and later to my brothers and me. For many years our ritual on Christmas Eve was to take the presents for our parents to wherever she was working, and she was always working, and she would wrap them beautifully for us. She had impeccable taste; in many cases she picked out the best presents for my mother. She was a really classy woman.

Danny and Carolyn were a great couple, great friends to my family, and I will miss them both with all my heart for the rest of my days.

My sincerest condolences go to Rip, Paula and their children.

James Wagoner

November 15, 2020

I have many memories of officiating but the ones I had with Danny were very entertaining and memorable. He was always a friend no matter where you saw him. He always was a supporter of the Boys and Girls Clubs and much appreciated. My thoughts and prayers are with his family.

Eddy Jones

November 15, 2020

I grew up watching Danny play sports at Mountainburg with an older brother of mine. He was sure a special player, and helped Mountainburg win back to back (57 & 58) State Championships in baseball, at a time when there were no classifications, every team played in the same bracket. Imagine a small town like Mountainburg competing against the likes of Pine Bluff, Little Rock, etc, and winning it all two years in a row. There are two banners hanging in the gym at Mountainburg High with all the names, what a team. Danny is a legend in my mind.

DAN GRAY

November 14, 2020

Just to add to my earlier comment. Two brothers, Don and Darrell Peters, also played baseball with Danny at Mountainburg. Both terrific pitchers. If they would have had playoffs way back then, this team would have won state. Thanks for the memories. RIP, Dan-Bone.


DAN GRAY

November 14, 2020

I played baseball against "Dan-Bone" in high school way back in the fifties in his days at Mountainburg. Why the name? That's what his teammates called him back then. He was clearly the best player on the field. I am not surprised that he went on to play college and pro baseball. Wish I could have known him better. My sympathies go out to his family and many friends.

John Cretnik

November 13, 2020

I wish to extend my deepest condolences to the Greenfield family, and the Carco International family.
There were many good years and there are many good memories.
I am sending up prayers for comfort and healing for our families and friends.
Unfortunately I am not able to travel at this time, but I hope to see our family in the near future.
All the best from the Cretnik family.
John (Little Willie) Cretnik

Tracy Cude

November 13, 2020

It always made me giggle to watch Danny and Ripper together- two peas in a pod, best friends, always gabbing and always laughing. Seeing grown men love each like that - out loud- is a very special thing and I am so grateful to have witnessed it. Danny leaves a legacy of love and one that I know Ripper will pass down to his beautiful children. Danny Greenfield is truly the best of the best and I am so glad he is now home with his Carolyn!

Jimmie Taylor

November 13, 2020

I have many great memories of my friend Danny. My best is when I beat him in the city championship at Ben Geren. I had to work hard to beat my friend. Mary Leigh and I have great memories of fun times with Danny and Carolyn. They really loved one another. They were sweet models for our girls. To. Cory Leigh he was her “cowboy” because he would dance with her. He will be deeply missed and always remembered by our family.

We loved that old boy. Jimmie and Mary Leigh

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY

1958

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY

1961

FROM THE FAMILY

Reno, 1966

FROM THE FAMILY

1966

FROM THE FAMILY

Carolyn and Danny

FROM THE FAMILY

Fort Smith Collegians
1960 Arkansas State Semi-pro Baseball Champions.

FROM THE FAMILY
FROM THE FAMILY

Learn more about the Greenfield name

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